by the Costa Rica
Through its “Sustainable Tourism Program,” 1. “Plant-a-Tree Program”
Xandari is taking these actions…
is a way for guests, employees, children and neighbors to contribute to
reforestation. Xandari provides a tree, the know-how and location – and
an individual, couple, family or group carefully plants it, with a
staff member’s help or guidance. A marker by the tree is a lasting
reminder of who planted that tree and when. We’ve found that the act of
planting a tree makes people feel part of a larger movement, signifies
hope and motivates people to continue taking action. Enormously
important in the cycle of life, trees absorb harmful elements that
otherwise contribute to global warming, plus they attract, feed and
shelter birds and other native species, provide shade, and more.
2. “Organic Soil”
is created by mixing organic compost with local soil, shredded dry
grass, leaves and branches that have been shredded or chopped quite
thin. This organic soil is used to help enrich the soil for Xandari´s
3. “Organic Compost” is created from food and garden waste and used on site.
4. “A Private Nature Reserve”
was established to protect the natural forest areas at Xandari. (Please
note that in all wooded areas of Costa Rica, plants and animals are
legally protected and should not be disturbed or removed; thank you for
respecting that guideline.)
5. “Orgaic Vegetables and Fruit”
are grown in our greenhouse and orchards on site for use in the
restaurant because it’s healthier and lessens our carbon footprint. With
this in mind, we use other organic local food sources when available.
Coffee at Xandari is grown organically and goes to the local coffee
cooperative where it combines with other organic beans from our area,
then is processed locally, served in our restaurant and sold in
6. “Healthy Food Choices” are featured on our restaurant menu that don’t contribute to the disappearance of the rainforest.
7. “100% Potable Water at Xandari” ensures the tap water is free of harmful bacteria and is checked and re-certified regularly.
8. “Botanic Gardens”
abound at Xandari, with indigenous plants of Costa Rica labeled with
both the popular and botanical name. This is interesting for guests and
creates pride in our staff for their country’s natural abundance.
Visiting school children can learn the names of their native plants. The
gardens also attract birds, butterflies and other wildlife to the area.
9. “Educational Green Programs” for both staff and guests help both to understand and participate in our sustainability efforts.
10. “Costa Rican crafts and products” are
used and featured in all aspects of our hotel, from the carved wood
bowls in our stores, to the locally made furniture in villas… from the
lotions and oils used at the spa, to the granola we serve at breakfast.
This emphasis on authenticity to the culture supports the artists,
craftsmen and companies around us.
11. “Energy conservation”
is practiced by using CFL bulbs that consume 75 percent less energy and
produce 75 percent less heat than standard bulbs, efficient LED lights,
and solar lighting on walkways. Solar panels heat our Sunset Pool and
Pool #1. Guests and luggage are transported via electric cart. We
encourage both staff and guests to turn off lights and unplug equipment
that’s not being used. We have constructed a drying area with a
transparent roof for drying hotel laundry when weather permits, and many
guests elect the option of having their towels and sheets laundered
12. “Water conservation”
is practiced by collecting rainfall and diverting some of the river
water into canals that are then used to irrigate our gardens. Also,
regular testing is done by the staff reviewing WC’s leaking as well as
pipes. During the rainy season our Sunset Pool is filled with rainfall
13. “Recycling” of
paper, glass, aluminum and cardboard is done by staff in all areas of
the hotel, including the sorting of villa waste; recyclable and
refillable bottles are used when possible; and products with the least
packaging are preferred. We also have a local program with the community
where we collect recycle material twice a month. The material is taken
to a collection center only 2 miles from Xandari.
14. “Biodegradable and non-toxic cleaning products” are
used throughout hotel; an alternative to chlorine is used in the
swimming pools. The pool water is purified with a system of natural
chlorination using salt. Organic bacteria EM (efficient microorganism)
is used in the cleaning of rooms, reducing the use of chemicals.
15. “Employment” of
local people from Tacacorí is favored. Out of 57 total employees, 44
are from the small village of Tacacorí where Xandari is located. As an
example, our manager grew up and still lives 100mts from our entrance.
Many of our very-local employees have been with Xandari since its
inception, and provide us with a consistent, dependable work force,
while we provide them with a consistent, dependable employer. But much
more than that, we have become a caring extended “family,” not only
birthing Xandari together, but watching each other’s children grow,
attending marriages, celebrating births, learning each other’s language,
sharing cultures, and creating our future together. Most other
employees are also relatively local, from surrounding villages or
16. “Community involvement with neighbors” including
the local school and church, is an integral part of our program. For
instance, we helped repair and paint the Tacacorí school and donated
funds needed to expand the church. School children have planted trees as
part of our “Plant-a-Tree Program” and they perform traditional dances
for guests on Costa Rica’s Independence Day. We provide a list of local
activities on the bulletin board at Reception and encourage guests to
participate in the community events around us. We also invite members of
the community and the local school to enjoy the museum itinerant
exhibitions of Museos del Banco Central that are eventually displayed in
our Art Studio during different periods of the year.
17. “Regular Donations”
are made to Amigos de los Parques Nacionales (a membership program
created by ProParques, Fundecor and SINAC that offers people,
organizations and businesses the opportunity to demonstrate their
commitment towards Costa Rica’s National Parks); our guests can support
the program with a donation of an additional $2 per person by paying for
the national park entrance fee at the hotel. (You can become a direct
member by joining any of their programs; visit
http://amigosdelosparques.org for information.) Regular donations are
also made to SASY (Stop Animal Suffering – Yes!), dedicated to the
ethical treatment of animals. Various homeless dogs and cats are fed and
cared for by staff and guests at the hotel. We attempt to control the
situation so as not to adversely affect guests. (Please help in this
effort by advising us of any problems… We appreciate your tolerance.) We
also organize an annual spay & neuter campaign on site.
“You must be the change you wish to see in the world.” • Mahatma Gandhi
18. “We invite hotel guests”
to get involved in our environmental efforts by planting trees,
conserving water and electricity, and offering feedback and suggestions.
19. “Traveling light” and offsetting travel are suggested to our guests as ways to balance our carbon impact.
20. “Certification in Sustainable Tourism” (CST)
program has been awarded to Xandari for our efforts to be
environmentally, culturally and socially responsible. Through CST, we
join forces with others to further sustainable development in Costa
We are pleased to join the global movement to keep the Earth alive and well. After all…
One species we help save may be our own.
"The more freedom we enjoy, the greater the responsibility we bear,
toward others as well as ourselves."
• Oscar Arias, President of Costa Rica